Having access to concerts, movie screenings, dance performances and all of the other free events in Millennium Park is one of the greatest perks of summer in Chicago. Evenings on the lawn are even more attractive when you factor in the park's generous BYOB policy, which allows attendees to bring their own beer and wine to enjoy while taking in a show at the Pritzker Pavilion. While you can cart a bag full of booze to the majority of Millennium Park events, there are a few notable exceptions to the rule.
Just like last year, Millennium Park will be prohibiting outside alcohol at Pritzker Pavilion's seven most highly attended events this summer. That includes popular festivals like the Chicago Blues Festival and Chicago Jazz Festival, as well as annual events like the Broadway in Chicago Summer Concert and the always-packed Grant Park Music Festival Fourth of July concert. Of course, it's not as if these events will be dry—guests can grab a drink at bars stationed around park grounds.
Visitors to Millennium Park this summer should also be prepared for bag checks when passing through park's security permitter, which is usually situated around the Great Lawn at Pritzker Pavilion. While you're free to bring beer, wine and food into the park, items like metal cutlery, skateboards and tents are prohibited at events, concerts and festivals (a complete list of prohibited items is available on the Millennium Park website).
Take a look at the complete list of Millennium Park events where you won't be able to BYOB this summer and plan accordingly.
Chicago House Music Festival, May 24, 25
Chicago Blues Festival, June 7–9
Chicago Mariachi Festival, June 30
Grant Park Music Festival Independence Day Salute, July 4
Broadway In Chicago Summer Concert, August 12
Chicago Jazz Festival, August 29–September 1